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Chapter 6

Lexine Solomon

Lexine Solomon

Katelyn Barney and Lexine Solomon at the Dreaming Festival, Australia's International Indigenous Festival
Woodford, Queensland, Australia 2008
Photograph by Patricia Barney

Songs of Connection and Celebration by a Torres Strait Islander
by Katelyn Barney

Lexine Solomon released her first solo album in 2002 when in her midforties, celebrating her own identity as an Indigenous Torres Strait Islander woman living in mainland Australia. She engages her singing voice and her lyrics to articulate and express agency, empowerment, and celebration. With a combination of newly self-composed songs and covers, she is specifically involved with reclaiming and documenting the women in her family, and with encouraging and enabling women in positions of marginality, particularly Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal women. As singer, facilitator, manager, and producer, her multifaceted vocal career involves touring nationally and internationally to perform and run workshops.

This is Woman Album Cover, Lexine Solomon, 2002. Copyright Lexine Solomon.

Katelyn Barney: "I first met Torres Strait Islander performer Lexine Solomon in 2004 while undertaking research for my PhD on the contemporary music performance practices of Indigenous Australian women. After I completed my thesis in 2006, Lexine asked me if I would collaborate on a project with her. We decided to focus on the experiences of Lexine's fellow Torres Strait Islander women musicians and were successful in securing funding together. Over the last seven years, we have travelled across Australia together interviewing performers, presenting at conferences and writing articles. Our research relationship has grown into a strong friendship. We share a love of good food, music and laughter. My chapter draws on our experiences together as well as interviews undertaken with Lexine over the last seven years."

Performing on the Margins podcast featuring Lexine Solomon and Katelyn Barney, part of the Public Culture Podcasts by Griffith University, available for FREE on iTunes (link #3)

Lexine Solomon: Canberra's Best Kept Secret Woman

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